You spent time and money to put those letters after your name. Don’t let them go to waste!

Texas REALTORS® senior instructor Marion Napoleon is the broker/owner at Unlimited Realty Solutions in Grand Prairie. She taught the session Turn Your Designation into Dollars during February’s Texas REALTORS® Winter Meeting. Here are three of her tips for maximizing your hard-earned and maintained credentials.

Tell Everyone You’re Qualified

If you have a certification or designation, make sure your prospects and clients know it. Don’t be afraid to tell people you are an expert in your field. Include your designation in your marketing materials and social media. Start talking about it. You want to be the first person that people think of when they need a specialist.

Access Online Resources

“You have an abundance of resources with whatever designation you have. The Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council (REBAC), Real Estate Business Institute (REBI), and other NAR designating groups provide you with webpages and marketing materials,” she says. Most designations have Facebook groups or networks where you can connect with other designees.

Napoleon advocates connecting locally or starting your own online groups. Larger groups may let you know about listing leads, but smaller groups can foster the connections that produce referrals.

Build Your Referral Network

Knowing your market isn’t just good business—it’s the law. Texas Real Estate Commission rules require license holders to have geographic competence in the areas they work. They must be informed on local market areas and conditions affecting the real estate where the license holder is providing brokerage services.

This means you can’t help clients buy, sell, or rent where you don’t know the territory. What you can do is connect with other agents and brokers statewide and beyond to build your referral network. You can even network with your colleagues if you work for a larger firm or big franchise.

“One of the main strategies is creating meetups in your area and inviting local REALTORS® and those in neighboring cities,” Napoleon says. Network with fellow designees. Socialize. Exchange business cards and contact information. Then keep in touch to build those relationships.

Video conferencing platforms like Google Meet and Zoom can connect people who otherwise couldn’t meet up due to time or distance. “There’s no limit to what that designation can allow us to do now thanks to the virtual world,” she says.